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gender bias

Thursday News: Wattpad’s record year; Women in science and on the internet; Marketing your ebook; and More cool gadgets

Thursday News: Wattpad’s record year; Women in science and on the...

“‘Put at least one woman on the team that organizes a scientific symposium, and that team will be much more likely to invite female speakers,’ said study co-author Arturo Casadevall, chair of microbiology and immunology at Yeshiva University, in a statement. The authors analyzed 460 symposia involving 1,845 speakers in two large meetings sponsored by the American Society for Microbiology, the General Meeting and the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy.” The Atlantic

“According to a 2005 report by the Pew Research Center, which has been tracking the online lives of Americans for more than a decade, women and men have been logging on in equal numbers since 2000, but the vilest communications are still disproportionately lobbed at women. We are more likely to report being stalked and harassed on the Internet—of the 3,787 people who reported harassing incidents from 2000 to 2012 to the volunteer organization Working to Halt Online Abuse, 72.5 percent were female.” Pacific Standard

“It stands to reason that punchy, exciting word choice is a must for an effective blurb, but we weren’t sure how much our readers agreed. When we tested this hypothesis, the results were surprising even to us, as the addition of just one key word consistently drove better response rates. In one case, placing the word “hilarious” near the beginning of a blurb resulted in almost 4,000 more clicks.” BookBub Unbound

“Intel’s new prototype smartwatch integrates a full phone into a watch, not simply relying on a smartphone like most other smart watches, including the Samsung Galaxy Gear and Sony Smartwatch 2, for connectivity.” The Guardian

Dear Author

Monday News: Mark Coker of Smashwords suggests that $3.99 is the...

In terms of price, however, while a 99c price book may sell 3.9 times as many books as one price over $10.00, the 99c price book must sell 19.4 more copies to make the same amount in revenue for the author. Coker also noted that $3.99 books sold more units than any other price except for free which suggests to Coker that the pricing might be creeping upwards, slightly.

All interesting stuff. Smashwords

Epic fantasy gives you vistas. Vistas need words. It gives you the history of kings back a hundred generations. It gives you mythologies. It gives ruins of civilizations that lived before the one your heroine is currently fighting for. It tells you not only the color of the king’s hair, but what’s on his banner and why. It gives you not only the names of the characters, but their fathers and grandfathers. Why. What. When. Where.

Good epic fantasy doesn’t just take you to a world; it builds a world from the ground up: Currency, politics, food, geography, history. Nothing is left to chance. Once you enter Martin’s seven kingdoms or Tolkien’s Middle Earth, you will have felt you could navigate the culture, sit at dinner with the commoners or even royalty and not miss a beat or wonder where the spoons are.

“Gender perception can be a pernicious thing: Where a lack of warmth passes in a male, in a woman, it’s deadly. Messud is correct to point out that what is simply dangerous in a man is often seen as unacceptable in a woman. In fact, I would go a step further. Where anger can be seen as a relative positive in a man, it is hardly ever perceived as anything other than a negative in a woman. Consider: Assertiveness is repeatedly ranked as a positive, important central trait in males. In something known as the halo effect, we tend to evaluate secondary characteristics in light of the overarching primary ones that we look for. So, when we think of a male as assertive (good), we will likely reinterpret his anger as just a facet of that assertiveness. If we see a woman as lacking in warmth (bad), anger becomes a sign of her, to borrow McCleave’s words, unbearable grimness.”

My mentor, a pretty awesome guy, gave me the book “The Dance of Anger” which talked about how anger is considered so unseemingly for women but how we women should embrace it anyway.  As a corollary, Maureen Johnson had a number of people submit reimagined covers based on gender reversals.  The results were pretty interesting.

Most everyone who unlocks their ebooks does so in order to protect themselves and preserve their own access rather than for infringing purposes. It’ll be interesting to see who comes down where in terms of lobbying for and against this bill.Ars Technica